- "He's a beast straight out of Hell. But he doesn't want Genesis for himself, he wants to kill it, and you. And there's nothing you can do to stop him."
- —Fiore describing the Saint of Killer to Jesse[src]
The "Saint of Killers" is the title of a man named William. During the civil war, he earned the nickname, the Butcher of Gettysburg. After his death, he was damned to Hell. There, he was forced to relive his family's death over and over. Each time, he slaughtered everyone in Ratwater as vengeance for eternity. The man eventually had a visit from DeBlanc and Fiore, where they offered to release him from Hell if he killed Jesse Custer.
Released from Hell, the Saint is hellbent on killing Jesse. Eventually, the Saint of Killers was given an extract of Jesse's soul, making him vulnerable to Genesis. He was then locked in an armored truck beneath the Angelville swamps. He was later used by the Grail, only to be turned over to Mannering.
The Saint of Killers was later contracted to return Eugene Root and Adolf Hitler to Hell by Satan. After returning the two, his guns were returned to him. He then demanded to know if Satan had anything to do with the death of his family. After learning Satan was in on the meeting, he shot Satan dead in the head and resumed his hunt for Jesse Custer.
During a final confrontation with Jesse, the Saint was convinced to repent before Jesse killed him. As a result, the Saint ascended to Heaven where he slaughtered the Heavenly Host. When God returned, the Saint chose hate over love and killed God, taking his throne.
Battle of Gettysburg
William served in the Confederate Army in the 4th Virginia Infantry. During the Battle of Gettysburg, he killed 77 men and several horses, earning himself the nickname "The Butcher of Gettysburg.
After the war, William fell in love with a woman and finally found peace in his life. The two raised a daughter. However, disease struck his family and his soul shattered the moment he discovered they had passed.
Death of his family and vengeance
When his daughter fell sick, the man set out in search for medicine. One night, he encountered a group of pioneers from St. Louis, who had invited him to join them for dinner. When they asked if he believed the West was a paradise, the man replied "It ain't".
Later, the man passed by a tree with Native Americans hung and their scalps torn off. William reached Ratwater. He arrived at Ratwater's apothecary where he requested medicine. He was told that the earliest he could have it was by the morning. William then headed to the saloon. William saw in the backroom that the gruesome fate that befell the family he saw in the apothecary: the father was killed and the mother raped as the child was forced to watch. A preacher told William he looked familiar.
The following day, William picked his medicine up and left Ratwater. On the way, he passed the pioneers he had met previously. After hesitation, William turned around to protect them from a similar fate as a previous family. When he arrived, he found their carriage with blood. He arrived in the backroom and saw the family selling scalps. William was then savagely beaten. As he left, the preacher told him he recognized him from Gettysburg as they fought against each other. The preacher proceeded to kill William's horse. William was forced to walk back to his home. When he returned, he found his family dead as crows feasted on their bodies. At that point, William's soul shattered and became the implacable killing machine, the "Saint of Killers". Enraged, the Saint packed his weapons.
The Saint made his way back to Ratwater. He beheaded several children. Next, he headed to Cooley's, where MacReady introduced him as the Butcher of Gettysburg. MacReady told him to announce his love with Jesus. The Saint told MacReady he loved his horse and family ,the Saint then told them Jesus could join them in Hell as he dumped the heads of the children on the floor. The Saint killed MacReady as the latter asked him what he wanted. The Saint ordered the Chinese singer to finish his song. The Saint slaughtered everyone in the saloon and beheaded the singer. The Saint went for a shot just before he was killed by a tornado.
Damnation and release
The Saint was damned to Hell by God, forced to relive the death of his family and his slaughtering the people of Ratwater for vengeance over and over forever. Eventually, he was confronted by DeBlanc and Fiore. DeBlanc offered to release him from Hell if he would agree to help him with a job. The Saint was told they would tell him once he followed. The Saint then shot DeBlanc in the head. The Cowboy asked Fiore what the job was. The Saint was told they wanted him to kill a preacher.
Hunt for Jesse Custer
The Saint of Killers then arrived in Annville, only to find it in ruins. The Saint of Killers then shot Susan, instantly killing her, despite her being an angel. The Saint of Killers proceeded to walk over her body growling "Preacher,", looking among the wreckage of Annville.
The Saint soon caught up with Jesse, Cassidy, and Tulip. He fired a shot, killing a state trooper. A shoot out ensued and the Saint slaughtered the cops as the three made their escape.
He followed their trail to a gas station, where the attendant failed to report where the three headed. Furious, the Saint ripped the attendants tongue out. The following day, the Saint arrived Mike's house some time after the three had left. He threatened Mike to reveal their whereabouts but Mike commit suicide as to not reveal such information, enraging the Saint once again. He eventually caught up with the three again, this time having Jesse in his sight. Jesse commanded him to stop but the Saint was able to resist his powers and drew his gun, pointing directly at Jesse. The Saint fired his gun but a truck intercepted the bullet, killing the driver causing the driver to swerve into the Saint. The Saint pushed the truck out of the way but is greeted by gunfire from gun fanatics. The Saint shook off all the bullets and slaughtered several people at the motel. When he noticed the three escaped, he growled.
The Saint later confronted Fiore and reminded him their deal was still on. After being told they were headed for New Orleans, the Saint was asked by Fiore to put him out of his misery, which the Saint agreed to. Following this, the Saint marched away, heading for New Orleans.
The Saint was lead to Denis' apartment, but directed to the wrong suite. He slaughtered multiple people before finding his way to Denis' suite. As he asked Denis where Jesse was, Jesse used the word to get his attention. The Saint was then told that God couldn't bring him to heaven. He then was told he could be sent to Heaven if his soul was returned. The Saint then gave Jesse 1 hour to return with a soul or he'd kill Jesse's friends.
When Jesse returned and gave him a fragment of his own soul, the Saint was helpless to fall to Jesse's commands. Before he could be sent back to Hell, the Saint told Jesse he'd be sending his own soul to Hell. The Saint was then driven into the swamps of Angelville.
The Saint was later freed by the Grail and had the piece of Jesse's soul extracted from him. Immune to Genesis once more, the Saint set out to exact revenge on the preacher. He tracked Jesse down once more to Denis' apartment. Despite Jesse, Tulip and Cassidy's best efforts, the Saint easily overpowered them all. Not content with simply killing Jesse, he elected to scalp him first, only to be stopped at the last moment by Mannering, who threatened to put his family in Hell if he didn't come with her. After being escorted back to his cell, the Saint requested an audience with Satan.
The Saint's request was granted, and Satan happily met him in his office. After chastising him for escaping Hell by having him whipped to the bone, the Devil tasked the Saint with retrieving Eugene and Hitler, two recent escapees. The Saint requested his guns back, but was denied. Instead, the Devil offered him the guns back, as well as a chance to exact revenge on Jesse once the Saint retrieved the escapees. He successfully tracks down both Eugene and Hitler, and drags them in chains to a bus stop. There he meets Sidney, who is also waiting for the Hell bus with a captured Featherstone (whom she thinks is Tulip). The Saint boards the bus with Eugene and Hitler, but before they can leave they are stopped by the real Tulip, who wants the briefcase Featherstone is holding back. After Eugene unintentionally blows Tulip's cover, she is dragged to the bus while Featherstone is released.
After a failed escape attempt, Tulip gets another idea. She mocks the Saint, provoking him into slamming her head against a window, cracking it. Before anyone can capitalize on this, the bus is hit by a tank shell. The Saint and Sidney crawl out of the bus only to be confronted by Hitler's newly formed SS unit (headed by Rick), whom Hitler called earlier to rescue him. In the ensuing fight Sydney and the Saint kill most of the Nazis, until Sidney mocks his wife and daughter's deaths, distracting him and allowing the tank to run him over. Trapped, he utilizes a Nazi's knife to escape by heating it up with his breath and then jamming it into the vehicle's fuel tank, blowing it up. Enraged by Sidney's remark, he tears out her eyes before flipping the bus back on its wheels. Eugene asks him about Tulip, but the Saint decides to let her go.
In Hell, he is congratulated by Satan on a job well done. As promised, he is given his guns and saber back. Satan is also overjoyed to learn that the Saint wants to kill Jesse Custer, as due to a contract he made with Madame L'Angelle, Jesse's soul would go to Hell, along with Genesis. Much to the Devil's shock, however, he is held at gunpoint by the Saint, who wants to know if Satan is the one responsible for the death of his family. Satan denies this, and points the finger to God instead, before ordering the later to put the gun down. The Saint, instead, shoots the Devil dead. Sydney protests, but the Saint reminds her that the old rules don't apply anymore. He then goes forth on his quest for revenge, accompanied by Eugene, who also wants Jesse dead.
Tracking down Custer
With Eugene in tow, the Saint begins traveling to Jesse's last known location. They arrive to Angelville, only to find it burnt down, and continue traveling. Eugene tries to convince the Saint not to kill Jesse, but has little success. Eugene is also certain that everything that has happened was a part of God's plan, even after the Saint tells him that God is gone. After they stop in a diner, the Saint is very nearly angered when the waitress tells him they don't serve whiskey, but Eugene manages to calm him down. When Eugene goes to the bathroom, he is arrested by the Sexual Investigators. Due to being underage, he is sent back to the orphanage, but the Saint rescues him by killing the driver. Eugene tells him that he didn't have to murder the driver, but the Saint coldly replies that it was all a part of God's plan. Eugene and the Saint then travel to Australia by the Saint piercing a hole though the Earth with his gun.
During a final confrontation with Jesse, the Saint was convinced to repent by Jesse. After he repented, Jesse slit the Saint's throat with a sword and his soul ascended to Heaven.
In Heaven, the Saint retained his mystical weapon and slaughtered the Heavenly Host. When God arrived, the Saint confronted him and revealed that Jesse had sent the Saint to Heaven as he knew God would likely return there at some point. Though God offered to restore the Saint's family so that he could live a life of love, the Saint chose hate and shot God dead. The Saint then took God's throne for himself becoming the new ruler of heaven in the process.
Powers and abilities
- Immortality/invulnerability: The Saint is immune to all forms of damage and, therefore, cannot be killed. He was unfazed when slammed into a post by a truck and shot with hundreds of bullets, both of which left no visible scratch of the skirmish on his body. Thus far, the only things that has been able to physically hurt him were Satan's ceiling hooks and Sidney's whip, both of which were able to pierce his skin and flesh, although this didn't seem to have any adverse effects on the Saint other than cosmetic.
- Superhuman Strength: The Saint possesses noticeable superhuman strength, enough to effortlessly lift humans off the ground and send them flying across rooms with one arm and even push trucks out of the way and flip over buses. He is also far stronger than vampires like Denis and Cassidy, allowing him to overpower them with ease. As such, he was able to snap the former's neck without struggle while sneaking through Jesse's apartment and toss the latter through a wall, knocking him out. There does seem to be a limit to his strength, however, as he was unable to break out of the Souls Happy Go Go truck (though he was apparently weakened by Jesse's soul extract) and was unable to lift the tank that ran him over.
- Hell's breath: When trapped under a tank, the Saint was able to heat a Nazi's knife up to extremely high temperatures using his breath. He then used the said knife to blow up the tank. The saint can also use his breath to heat up the hammer of his revolvers and "supercharge" his guns, allowing projectiles to pierce through anything, including the entire Earth.
- Genesis immunity: The Saint was able to resist Jesse's power when he had no soul. However, after receiving an extract of Jesse's soul, the Saint is no longer immune to Genesis. He regained this power after the extract was drained from him.
- Genesis tracker: Every time Jesse uses the Word of God,the Saint can track down where Jesse has been. Especially confronting those who Jesse used the Word on.
- Omnideadly guns: The Saint of Killers' guns, a pair of Colt 1847 Walkers, are able to kill any individual, despite the individual's circumstance and powers. This was demonstrated when he shot both DeBlanc and Susan, both of whom are angels that do not reappear when shot. Even Satan himself was not impervious to the weapon's seemingly limitless lethality. Additionally, he is the only one who can use these guns, as Tulip was unable to fire or unload the bullets.The guns are also immensely powerful, with a bullet able to penetrate a dozen walls before stopping. If the Saint heats up the hammers, the guns become so powerful the bullet can drill a hole from one end of the Earth to another, straight through the center. Even after dying and ascending to Heaven, the Saint retained these guns and was able to kill God with them.
- Sword: The Saint of Killers' sword is an old Confederate Army sword. It is unknown if it is able to kill any individual despite the individual's circumstance and powers like the Saint's guns as it has not been demonstrated on the show. He has used it to perform decapitations on the show. Though, the powers of the sword were shown in S4E10 (at 11m05s), when the Saint killed "Archangel" with his sword who died without respawning.
- Knife: The Saint of Killers is equipped with a hunting knife.
Legend of the Saint
The Saint is very notorious. Many had heard legends and ghost stories of him. The Saint has also been featured as the logo of Ratwater Whiskey, named after the town he slaughtered. Many myths believe he is feared by Satan himself, which was proved warranted when The Saint murdered him.
According to MacReady, a preacher from Ratwater, the man loved killing unlike any other. Despite his fearsome reputation, the Saint was a loving husband and father, attempting to live a normal life and doing everything in his power to save his family. Once they died however, the last piece of good in him died as well, with his soul literally shattering to pieces and scattering across the world. In his fury, he slaughtered the entire town of Ratwater, including the children as an act of vengeance. Upon his resurrection, he is shown to be a remorseless killer, ruthlessly slaughtering anyone that gets in his way. After Jesse tricks and traps him, he becomes fixated on exacting revenge on the preacher. Despite lacking a soul, he still deeply cares for his family, as talking about them is a surefire way to incur his wrath. The Saint went as far as to rip out Sidney's eyes for mocking their deaths and execute Satan for his involvement in their death (as well as for torturing him). He also seems to have developed somewhat of a fondness for Eugene, sticking up for him when Satan struck him.
Behind the scenes
- The Saint of Killers is portrayed by Graham McTavish.
- Rosenberg, Craig (writer), Slovis, Michael (director) (June 26, 2016). Preacher Season 1: "South Will Rise Again". Episode 5. (1x04).
- Rosenberg, Craig (writer), Slovis, Michael (director) (July 24, 2016). Preacher Season 1: "Finish the Song". Episode 9. (1x08).
- Evans, David (writer), Laws, Mary (director) (July 24, 2017). Preacher Season 2: "Sokosha". Episode 16. (2x06).
- Catlin, Sam (writer), Goldberg, Evan & Rogen, Seth (directors) (June 5, 2016). Preacher Season 1: "See". Episode 2. (1x01).
- Catlin, Sam (writer), Catlin, Sam (director) (July 31, 2016). Preacher Season 1: "Call and Response". Episode 10. (1x09).
- Catlin, Sam (writer), Goldberg, Evan & Rogen, Seth (directors) (June 25, 2017). Preacher Season 2: "On The Road". Episode 11. (2x01).
- Catlin, Sam (writer), Goldberg, Evan & Rogen, Seth (directors) (June 26, 2017). Preacher Season 2: "Mumbai Sky Tower". Episode 12. (2x02).
- Buiser, Philip (writer), Morris, Michael (director) (July 17, 2017). Preacher Season 2: "Dallas". Episode 15. (2x05).
- Goodman, Sara (writer), Barba, Norberto (director) (August 28, 2017). Preacher Season 2: "Backdoors". Episode 21. (2x11).